Saturday, November 8, 2008

Letter to a younger self.

At "Religion-Outside-The-Box", there was a suggested exercise t0 write a letter to the "yourself" of 10 to 15 years ago. So, here goes:

Hey Hank,

I know what your up to. Your trying to make your world perfect by doing exactly what you perceive God wants you to do. If you live up to your end of the bargain, then God will live up to His side. You want God to protect you and your family from all harm. You have always made your choices so that everyone would be safe. You live your life to keep your fears at bay.

You need to hear that God doesn't make deals. No matter how hard you try to protect your family, you will fail. Life will happen, pain will be the result. All your children will go through perodic painful episodes in their lives and you can't prevent it from happening. The beliefs you hold are not reasonable. It's like your still expecting a father that will protect you, love you, make you safe. A cocoon of calm in a world of strife.

I can warn you that in your seeking of such a cocoon, your going to end up back inside a wine bottle, endlessly seeking that freedom from fear. You need to know that drinking will fail you as well. At the end of your drinking, your life will be at it's most painful.

Some advice? Don't expect God to solve your problems, just allow God to be with you as you go through those problems. Be open to what God has planned for you. Don't be grandiose in determining what God's will is for you, simpler is better. Don't be afraid to risk helping those in need, let yourself be vulnerable, take a chance. Avoid the safest pathway, it leads only to isolation.

You don't have to get lost in the bottle. You don't have to spend countless hours in your future gazing at porn. You are literately going to throw away years of your life is such activities.

Lastly, you have striven so hard to be the best at what ever it is you do. Your career choices are going to end up fruitless. The endless seeking of "at-a-boys" all the while bemoaning yourself for being such a failure will do you nothing but harm.

Learn to accept yourself at you are, your life as it is. Don't try to control and change. Let life flow around you and through you. Accept the painful bits. Accept the joyful bits. Accept the boring ones. Stop beating yourself up. Love yourself, just as my Higher Power loves you. Just as your spouse deeply loves you. You deem yourself alone, but you are far from that. Gentleness will do you well. As will compasion and patience. For yourself and for others.

Lots of love from you future self.

Photo credit: fedewild



This is beautiful. What a wonderful idea. Your letter to yourself is packed full of wonderful thoughts.


Mary P Jones (MPJ) said...

What a beautiful letter to yourself, full of wisdom, love and compassion for who you were. Thanks for sharing.

Laura said...

Well written, Hank. Makes me think of a Bob Cratchet sort of story...only it's real and it happened.

How excellent that you're on this side of the story.

May I share this with Cliff?

Shadow said...

your thought echo mine. exactly. don't control. don't change. let life flow around and through. that's my challenge. that's your challenge. that's the challenge of many people out there. here's to getting IT.

Anonymous said...

You are such an inspiration to me, stop by my blog and pick up the awards I nominated you for.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Wow you got to heart of the matter rather quickly. I'm sober 19 years and just understanding these things about myself. Your letter could easily be mine. I am all those things in your letter.

Thank you. I needed that.

Gabriella Moonlight said...

Wow, this is amazing and I thank you immensely for your honesty and truth. This is a brilliant idea.
Thank you!

Sophie in the Moonlight said...

How did you feel after you wrote this?

I've done this exercise and then put a stamp on it and mailed it to myself. I cry every time I do it (3x so far).

You have such a loving and clear-sighted internal dialogue. You are very lucky to have you, you know.

We are too.

Cat said...

Beautifully done Hank.